Urban Meadow + Orchard

Caz and Stephen's backyard came with a beautiful rain garden installed by the city, but the rest of the yard was solid rock mulch. They needed a larger planting area to reduce the rock and bring more habitat space to the garden. We hauled away lots and lots of rock and brought in soil to create a curved garden bed that turned the once burdensome existing rock into a useful pathway opening up to an intentional feeling circular hang out space.

 

Lots of permaculture thinking went into the space, including the hugelkultur method of burying logs and branches under the soil berms, which creates moisture retentive beds to decrease the amount of watering needed. Nitrogen-fixing shrubs and beneficial insect supporting flowers bring natural fertilizer and pest protection to the edibles.

This skinny backyard was stuffed with fruits like blueberry, sea buckthorn, and pineapple guava, enough space for a small veggie garden, nostalgic plants like heathers from Caz's homeland of England, and lots of native plants for pollination habitat.

LOCATION

Buckman Neighborhood

GARDEN GOALS

- Expand planting area

- Backyard Habitat Certification

- Add edibles and incorporate permaculture style 

- Create hang out area

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BEFORE

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AFTER

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BEFORE - looking back at house

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AFTER - The path widens to a circular area for sitting around the fire pit

A few months after planting with pots of veggies and herbs

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The existing rock was reduced to a wide pathway by hauling away rock and replacing it with soil berms for planting

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A removable bench top was added to the existing raised bed to increase sitting area in the hang out zone. Salvaged bricks were used for a low-cost edging

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Plantings include a mix of unique edible shrubs like sea buckthorn, pineapple guava, and natives like red flowering currant, Oregon sunshine, and Douglas aster

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Pollinator flowers, native grasses, and edible shrubs

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View from the deck at the height of summer in the first year of growth

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Self seeding California poppy was left to grow naturally in the rock to create a meadow feel

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A pocket of native woodland plants

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Design Concept

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INSPIRATION PHOTO